A Christian’s Manhood

Salon’s Right Hook brings to my attention Doug Giles, Pastor of Clash Christian Church and His People Christian Church, Miami. Giles has just written a call for the return of Christian masculinity. He notes that

The masculine spirit being absent…has…weakened our nation’s morality.Put an end to preaching by cheesy, whiny, quiche eating, preening Nancy Boys…Hire a pastor who throws off a good John Wayne vibe instead of that Boy George feeling…The Church has got to eliminate its effeminate drift and re-establish a masculine base…Beware, young man, of parents and pastors who want to “mother” you.

One can sympathise when he calls worship music “saccharine-laced slush”, and anyone who has dealt with some of the more creepy passive-aggressive Evangelical characters will most likely prefer a full-blooded Ian Paisley. Of course, we’ve had the Promise Keepers for a while now, and pictures of Jesus as a body-builder, but Giles would appear to be part of a new trend explored a few weeks ago in New York Times  (click here for bootleg copy):

The gentle, pacifist Jesus of the Crucifixion is sharing the spotlight with a more muscular warrior Jesus of the Second Coming, the Lamb making way for the Lion.

Stephen Prothero points out in the article that

When you see [Jesus] stand up at the end of [The Passion], he reminds you of Schwarzenegger. I think that movie shows more of a macho Jesus, who, in this case, is brutalized instead of brutalizing.

The Times also points out the Jesus of Glorious Appearing, who massacres the ungodly.

Giles’ His People Christian Church is described as targeting

the twenty something crowd with the purpose of getting the slack out of slackers. Doug giles is creative and a preteen, teen and adult audience hear is message and get restless and unsatisfied with status quo chrisitianity. This church is into christians taking the bible, philosophy, economics, history, law and just about everything else as seriously as god does. Don’t sleep on this church. The next generation of god’s warriors are coming out of this ministry.

The website for his Clash Church connects him with David Limbaugh (whose brother, we all know, was a real warrior in the 1960s battling the anal cyst), David Aikman (author of Jesus in Beijing, and whose views on Christianity in China I discussed a while back), and David Barton, Vice Chairman of the rather disturbing Republican Party of Texas.

For further hints on how to proceed with injecting Christendom with testosterone, Giles could check out the old muscular Christianity movement. Miss Poppy Dixon also makes available John Cross’s 1946 tract The Hard Road to Manhood:

I am acquainted personally with many young men who have voluntarily denied themselves all feminine companionship. … Instead of having a family of six or eight, they have thousands of boys who feel that these young men are like brothers or fathers to them. Many boys will grow up better men and fathers because these young men set everything else aside in life and devoted all their time to showing boys the pleasure and happiness that can be found by taking the hard road to manhood.

Meanwhile, for another all-American Christian warrior, may I commend Jesus’ General?